Preliminary Analysis of King Car Operations AM Peak Downtown (Updated)

Updated June 24, 2013 at 6:10 pm:  In the original version of this article, I mentioned that charts for March 2012 would be added in an update.  These charts are now included, and there are minor changes to the text to reflect this.

Recently TTC Chair Karen Stintz and CEO Andy Byford proposed a trial operation of King Street between Shaw and Parliament as a reserved zone for transit vehicles and taxis during the AM peak period.  Their concern and claim is that they cannot provide better service without exclusivity over this area.

I believe that this proposal suffers from a lack of detailed knowledge both of the way the line actually operates and the causes of systemic delays (aka “congestion”) to service.  The AM peak is much less of a problem than midday, PM peak, evening and weekend operations on the King route.  The TTC would do well to concentrate its proposals on areas and problems where there would actually be some benefit.  Asking for a total ban on cars rubs motorists (and their political supporters) the wrong way, and needs to be justified by solid data showing how transit would be improved.  The TTC has not done this.

Normally when I write a post with analysis of a route’s operations, I prefer to wait until I have more of the data formatted for presentation.  In this case, the debate is already underway in the press and in social media.  To contribute some technical background, I have started analysis of route 504 King for the months of November 2011, March 2012 and May 2013.

As with past analyses, the information is taken from the TTC’s vehicle monitoring system known as “CIS” which uses GPS to track the location of all vehicles every 20 seconds.  The GPS data are converted to a “flattened” view of a route which is a straight line (think of a piece of string pulled out taut).  Once this is done, plotting vehicle movements, headways at points and running times between points is greatly simplified.  (I plan to publish a separate article in coming weeks for those interest in the details of this process.)

Note that vehicles on 508 Lake Shore are not included in this analysis.  Only three inbound trips are scheduled during the AM peak.

Because the proposal addresses a reduction in running time and reduction of congestion in the central area, I will concentrate in this first article on movement of streetcars over the proposed exclusive area.  Other sections of the route and aspects of operation (e.g. headway reliability, short turns, time spent serving stops) will be the subject of future articles.

Westbound Service


Each of the PDFs linked here contains eight pages.  The data show the running times for cars travelling  between Sumach (a stop east of Parliament at the Eastern overpass) and Crawford (one stop east of Shaw).  This is roughly the location of the proposed reserved transit way.  (The points were chosen because they assist in plotting short turns that occur east and west of both locations.)

The first five pages of each set show weekday data for each calendar week of the month.  All weekdays are combined on page 6, Saturdays are on page 7, and Sundays are on page 8.  (Victoria Day 2013 is included with the Sundays.)

With both westbound files open, it is easy to flip back and forth between companion pages, notably the collected data for all weekdays (page 6).  Although this is a busy chart with many data points (one for each vehicle trip), comparing the two shows how the westbound trip from Sumach to Crawford differs in the 18 months span of the three charts.

Although there are considerable differences later in the day, the times up to 9:00 am have not budged very much.  Note that the time axis refers to the time a car left Sumach westbound.  The trip to Crawford takes 20-30 minutes, and so part or all of any trip after 8:40 will actually occur after 9:00 am when the proposed transit reservation ends.

The times do not peak until after 9:00 am on weekdays corresponding with the point at which parking westbound on King becomes legal and removes substantial capacity from the road.  There are individual examples of longer running times on specific days, but these can all be tracked back to delays at a point that may or may not have had anything to do with auto traffic (to the degree that this can be cross-checked to TTC E-Alerts, I will do so in a future update).  Systemic congestion shows up when all of the data points swing upward together for all days.

Between fall 2011 and late winter 2012, there was little difference in running times, and if anything the March 2012 data are the better set.  However, by May 2013, the whole band of data has moved up the page and it exhibits several interesting features including an early afternoon peak, a much larger PM peak than in 2011, and even a small mid-evening peak corresponding to the time when theatres let out west of Simcoe (this was also visible in 2011).

An important difference between the two years is the amount of construction on King that blocks traffic and the severe congestion at Spadina where all (rather than only some) of the 510 Spadina service is looping via Adelaide, Charlotte and King.  Queues for the turn west to north onto Spadina are aggravated by very heavy traffic on Spadina that often blocks the intersection, and by pedestrians crossing east to west where there is no separate priority signal for turning streetcars.  (A paid duty policeman has been added in mid June to this location at the TTC’s expense.)  This queue can extend back blocks right through the theatre district.


These files include the “all weekday” charts for segments of the route between Sumach and Crawford.  Note that the scale on these is double that of the full link from Sumach to Crawford (0-30 minutes versus 0-60) so that the fine details of the shorter segments are more evident.  Also, the times shown are for the vehicle time entering the segment, not the times at Crawford which are used in the earlier overall view.

There is little difference in the AM peak values for any of the segments, although the 2013 data do show more of a rise at around 8:00 am near Yonge than the 2011 data.  Collectively, these small changes make up the difference in running times seen on the overall chart for the westbound AM peak trips.

A common feature of some of these segments is that the running time does not change much through the day.  In other cases, the effect of parking beginning at 9:00 does appear. Where the running times are steady throughout the day, this shows that congestion effects are minimal, and the benefit of completely banning car traffic are dubious.

Conversely, the effect of construction on westbound service from University to Spadina is obvious looking at 2013 versus 2011 and 2012.  As the day wears on, running times become quite extended.  This is an extremely serious problem on the King route, but the TTC has made no provision for it in the scheduled service, nor has there been much effort to change local traffic regulations on King to compensate.  This is a stark contrast to the changes implemented for construction at Bay and Front both in road usage and in the schedule for the Bay bus.



The data for eastbound trips show a comparable story to the westbound data.  The data for all three months of weekdays (page 6 of these files) starts out near the “uncongested” value of 20 minutes and rises with a peak corresponding to the onset of parking at 9:00 am.  (Times shown are for the start of the eastbound trip at Crawford and so trips before 9:00 will show the effect of congestion further east after 9:00.)

The 2013 data show slightly more midday congestion than 2011, but the PM peaks for both years are roughly the same.  The 2011 PM peak is slightly more concentrated in time than 2013.


Looking at the detailed data for each segment, the segment from Crawford to Portland shows more congestion effects over the day in 2013 than in 2011 or 2012.  Some of this may be due to construction blocking the curb lane eastbound (as is now the case at Tecumseth, one stop west of Bathurst), but some may also be due simply to increased traffic.  This can only be answered with detailed counts, but that would require the existence of “before” data that the city may not have.

Between Portland and Peter, there is slightly more congestion in 2013 than in 2011/12, again possibly due to construction.

Between Peter and University, there is a spike in running times just around 9:00 am, and this, plus congestion through the day, is much more marked in 2013.  Similarly, from University to Yonge values are higher in 2013.  However, the PM peak for 2011 is tighter and higher than for 2013.  Traffic in the core is affected in 2013 by the closing of Front Street for Union Station reconstruction.

From Yonge to Sumach, there is little difference between the two sets of data.  Congestion is not an issue in this part of the route.

A Brief Look At Overall Service

In a future article, I will turn to the behaviour of the service overall, but as a preview, here is a chart of the route’s operation on Wednesday, May 15 (the week before Victoria Day weekend).


For those who have not read earlier articles with this type of chart, a brief explanation.

Each line represents one vehicle plotted in location versus time.  A full day from 4:00 am until 3:59 the following morning is plotted on eight pages with three hours on each page. Westbound cars are lines sloping up to the right, while eastbound cars slope down.

Locations on the route have been scaled to values between 0 (Broadview Avenue just north of Erindale at Broadview Station) and 1270 (Dundas just north of Edna at Dundas West Station).  This corresponds to a one-way trip of 12.7km by comparison the TTC’s Service Summary shows a round trip of 25.62km, or 12.81km one way.  The difference is likely due to rounding of the lengths of individual segments of the route used to translate data from GPS to the linear scale used here.

Certain behaviours show up in the charts:

  • Between roughly 5:00 and 7:00 am, cars appear briefly westbound from Queen & Broadview.  These are running into service via Parliament and Dundas to Broadview Station because the west-to-north curve at Broadview is out of service (the intersection is scheduled for replacement later  in 2013).
  • Cars appear for a time stationary at Queensway.  These are sitting in Roncesvalles Yard logged on for service, but not yet on the street.
  • Where a car is stationary in the middle of the route, this is likely a delay.  This can be seen at about 8:10 (page 2) where a westbound car (brown line) sits west of Yonge.  Note that three other cars (orange, pink, grey) disappear briefly.  These have been diverted around the delay via Wellington and vanish from this chart because they are off route.  Another delay later on the same page is eastbound south of Bloor around 9:20.
  • Dwell times show up as “steps” in the line.  The longer the time spent at a stop (or traffic signal) the wider the step.
  • Short turns show up clearly as lines that turn back before reaching the terminus.  Many of these are visible westbound at Roncesvalles on page 3 (late morning).  Some of this activity is in response to accumulated delay during the AM peak.
  • Eastbound short turns are not quite as obvious because the cars go off route.  There are two variants depending on which way a car travels around the Parliament, Dundas, Broadview loop.  At about 10:35, “purple” disappears at Dundas reappearing at King and Parliament at about 10:48.  At about 10:55, “dark green” leaves the route at Parliament and reappears westbound at Dundas just after 11:05.
  • Congestion shows up as lines whose slope flattens out.  Problems westbound to Spadina are clearly evident after 11:00 am and they get worse as the day goes on.
  • A few cars have wonky GPS units that cannot handle signal reflections in the core area.  4012, for example, reports a location in various parts of Etobicoke and Peel Region when it is anywhere near an office tower.  Such cars vanish and reappear on the charts.  Two examples are clearly visible between 22:20 and 22:50 westbound.
  • Bunching of cars is evident from closely spaced lines, and this occurs at all locations and times of day.  It is quite common for pairs of cars to leave a terminus close to each other, and for short turn cars to re-enter service right beside a through car rather than filling a gap.
  • Short turns continue through the late evening.  They are not only a peak-hour problem.


These charts show the headways at various points along the route for each direction.  As mentioned earlier, the locations were chosen to sample the service between various turnback/diversion points.  Each of the 14 pages in the two sets of charts shows the actual headway between vehicles for Wednesday, May 15, 2013.  These can be compared with the overall charts of service above.

A trend line is interpolated through the data points to give a general sense of values.  In the central part of the route, this tends to lie close to the scheduled headway (i.e. most or all of the trips are operated although their spacing and destinations may not match the schedule).  On outer parts of the route where short turns take their effect, the trend lines move away from scheduled values.


This extract gives the headways (among other information) for the King route for the schedule period beginning May 12, 2013.

As in all previous headway analyses, the overwhelming common factor is bunching of cars.  A very short headway (a point near the bottom of the graph) is followed by a much wider headway.  The scope of these values commonly lies outside of the TTC’s target 3-minute window, although that “window” is meaningless on a route like King where the a car can be running at almost twice the scheduled headway and still be “on time” for statistical reporting purposes.

Also quite striking is the fact that this behaviour occurs right from the terminals rather than accumulating along the route (although a moderately wide swing can grow as the pair of cars travels down the line).  Stepping through the pages from east to west, watch the behaviour of the trend line as it moves down (better headways in the central part of the route) and then back up (short turns cause worse headways on outer parts of the line).

Concluding Thoughts

There are far more data to plough through in reviewing the King car, but the basic conclusion here is that an AM peak transit reservation from Shaw to Parliament will do little to improve transit operations while creating great annoyance for motorists.  There are far worse problems on the King route both with scheduling (inadequate running time and service levels to handle actual conditions on the route), line management (chronic bunching and short turns that may do little to improve service), and traffic management (parking and other factors that steal capacity from the roadway).

The TTC risks using vital political capital and time on a proposal of only modest value while avoiding the much more difficult battles required (both externally and internally) to address all-day problems on the King route.

22 thoughts on “Preliminary Analysis of King Car Operations AM Peak Downtown (Updated)

  1. Steve: This comment was left on another thread and has been moved now that the article to which it really belongs has been published.

    Can you comment on the idea of “banning” cars on King during the rush hour? I actually really like this idea especially if headways could be managed as well to create a sort of “DRL” lite.

    Steve: I think you will see that I am less that enthusiastic about this proposal especially as it addresses a time period when it will have little effect (AM Peak).

    As for the 504 as a “DRL Lite”, this is not a viable proposal. As things now stand, a good deal of service never reaches Broadview Station, and erratic headways are common. When all of the service does reach the end of the line, the platform is jammed with streetcars often backing out onto Broadview. There is no room for additional service at this location. Riders on inbound 504 cars are regularly left at stops along King Street, and even on Broadview when service is the least disrupted. This suggests that there is little capacity to absorb much riding from the Danforth subway.

    A related problem for a “DRL” is that this close to Yonge, there must be a strong incentive to get off a train to change to a streetcar in the AM peak, and in the PM peak, someone arriving at Broadview faces a heavily loaded train eastbound.

    When, eventually, King service is improved with the LFLRVs, this will free up some space, but that is needed for growing demand from the new condos stretching from the Don River to Liberty Village.

    I don’t want this to sound insulting to you personally, but there is a big problem with politicians who are totally unaware of the demand that downtown development is placing on the streetcar system, and of the limitations on road capacity caused by car-friendly policies.


  2. Steve: This comment has been moved to the King Street article to which it properly belongs.

    Other than the recent news of proposed roll out of the new cars, I’ve not seen much since the first test runs. Steve do you know if they will be doing daylight test runs? Given that the first lines in the proposed schedule are Spadina and Bathurst would those be the lines we would see them on soon?

    Steve: There is talk of daylight runs, but considering that a lot of overhead (notably intersections) is still not pantograph friendly, operating an LFLRV during regular hours would be a challenge.

    Interesting news item today in relation to the roll out of the new LFLRVS is that TTC CEO Andy Byford is considering banning cars from King or Queen Streets during rush periods to keep the new trams to prevent bunching and keep them moving more quickly. That is not a new suggestions and I’m sure it will be a tough sell to council, especially given the current mayor at one point suggested replacing streetcars with buses. TTC Chair Stintz said she will have a motion for staff to study the proposal. Could this become an election issue next year?


    Steve: I would hate for such a poorly thought-out scheme to become an election issue. I am all for greater transit priority, but the King Street AM peak scheme is inappropriate for the actual conditions on the street as I discuss in the article.


  3. Fantastic analysis, as always.

    How much of the line management problem comes down to the fact that decisions appear to be made (at least from the rider’s perspective) by some manager on the street manually jotting down headways/arrival times in the world’s oldest day planner! I look out the window of my 1970s streetcar and don’t know whether it’s 2013 or still 1973!

    Steve: This is certainly part of the problem. Those route supervisors are supposed to be getting handheld devices so that they can monitor the line from real time data, but this has a certain limitation given all of the stuff they are carrying around already. Meanwhile back at CIS control, there seems to be less than thorough management of short turns to ensure their effectiveness and of pairs/triplets of cars to prevent bunching right from the terminals. This is a problem of sufficient manpower and of management attitudes about what is “important”.


  4. For the last 3mths, whenever I’d get off the GO Train at Union Stn., I’d walk up to King/University, not be able to get on a packed King car, and end up just walking west to Spadina. I’d always beat the streetcar.

    During lunch, if I had to dash towards the centre of town for anything, there’d be no point in A) waiting for an eastbound streetcar or B) sitting on one if it did arrive. It was always easier/faster to walk.

    And, at the end of the day, whether going to Union or up to Spadina Stn., walking was often the better way.

    Whatever the solution is not, who can provide a solution that is worth implementing, because the service sucks, plain and simple.

    Steve: Some readers of this blog would complain that “the service sucks” is not a sufficiently rigorous statistical description. However, this pretty much sums up the experience of would-be riders.


  5. Even if the TTC was managing the operations of this line to perfection, the quality of service will remain dismal so long as these streetcars continue to operate in mixed traffic. With ridership of 50,000/day, we shouldn’t have any qualms about taking half the road for a dedicated streetcar ROW.

    I wonder whether Stintz and Byford are laying out this proposal as a stepping stone towards wider ambitions. If they can demonstrate how well the streetcar runs at AM peak with traffic restrictions in place, this may allow them to build support for all-day restrictions.

    Steve: My problem with this approach is that, like so much of what Stintz and Byford have done, it takes the low-hanging fruit — the AM peak when the screams from kicking cars off of the road will be at their lowest level. The real problems with this route are later in the day and on weekends. I don’t see the AM peak ban as a first step, but rather a way in which we can waste a lot of time trying to “fix” the least of the problems. Once again TTC puts the onus for improvement on an external issue rather than dealing with TTC’s own line management and service issues.


  6. The only long term solution is to build the downtown relief line. This fairly old proposal to close King to cars would face a lot of opposition due to the increase in traffic congestion on Richmond/Adelaide and Wellington this would cause.

    Steve: Depending on the design of the DRL’s routing and station placements, it will not do a lot to reduce demand on the King car. These are two separate issues, and as long as people try to solve two problems with one route, we get nowhere. Most of the King car’s peak direction, peak hour riders originate on the route, and if the DRL doesn’t have a station near them, they will stay on the surface route. Moreover, the DRL won’t be open for at least 10 years, and the TTC really needs to improve service quality long before then.


  7. This suggestion will never be implemented. There are too many at the TTC who are firmly wedded to that “traffic congestion” explanation for any service shortcomings. A bit difficult, using this excuse for three-car bunching in an area with NO traffic!


  8. Hey, Steve. What would your opinion on the proposed trial be if it had been announced for the 504 WB in PM? Is there a perfect combination of line management that could solve the west-from-Yonge-to-Spadina slowdown without somehow removing some of the car congestion?

    Steve: Before we try banning cars, we should try to make better use of the space we already have. Shift the taxi stands to Adelaide and Wellington so that King is truly a 4-lane street. Ban parking through the day (including stopping and loading). Don’t stop at University, but go west to Spadina. Provide real transit priority for Spadina cars making the turns from King back to route. Tow mercilessly.

    After we do all that, then we can talk about banning cars.

    And, yes, improve line management and capacity. There is no excuse for cars running in pairs and triplets right from the end of the line across the city.

    Otherwise, all we are talking about is a vague proposal for action two years from now for a few weeks. Do we have to wait that long, and do nothing in the interim? Feels to much like the standard TTC routine of finding something external and blaming the fact it has not happened for inaction. It’s time for the city and the TTC to take responsibility now, not two years out, for the condition of traffic and transit on major routes like King.


  9. My ‘home stop” has been King and Jarvis for over a decade and the service has got steadily worse. Though I do not use the streetcar every day it is generally faster in the 8-9 morning period to walk to the King subway. Streetcars DO arrive at the stop – often in packs – but they are packed and this shelter does not have a “next bus’ display so one never really knows what’s just around the corner. Clearly eastbound cars are short-turned at Parliament or Broadview and re-enter service at Church and it is quite annoying to see cars turning westbound on King there.

    Later in the day the situation has recently improved a bit in the east-bound direction as the 72 bus now stops at the King station going eastbound. (This shelter has a next bus display.) If one lives south of King and west of Parliament it makes a very good substitute to the eastbound 504 and it now appears to be MUCH busier. Rumour has it that this ‘diversion’ will become permanent and the temporary stops on the diversion route now have painted-on 72 signs. (Of course the TTC is not always rational!)


  10. I find that the east-west streetcar routes (except St Clair, obviously) get snarled badly during the PM peak between Victoria and York/Elizabeth.


  11. Good analysis Steve.

    However, is it possible that, having achieved the car ban on King during the AM peak, TTC will feel compelled to showcase this route and manage it better for the whole day?

    On a side note, I agree that anything that can be done for the King streetcar will not substitute DRL subway, but rather will facilitate local / medium length trips.


  12. Steve:

    Your last link doesn’t seem to be the graph described, just a table of target service for all routes.

    Steve: It is not a graph, but one page from the TTC’s service summary showing the scheduled headways and other info for the King route. It’s easier to simply link this page than to reformat the info into my own table.


  13. I believe that a King Street transit mall proposal should be an exercise in urban realm design, rather than transit service improvement. I will support a transit mall if it brings transformative changes to the roadspace and streetscape. Too bad they’re proposing only for a few hours a day though.


  14. With the tracks closed south of King, I have to wonder if the TTC is trying to push too much through the Charlotte Street loop. They’re trying to turn 30 Spadina cars an hour along westbound King, plus more than 20 King cars an hour in rush hour. There’s only 40 signal cycles per hour, so the majority of cycles will have at least one Spadina car trying to make a right turn across a busy pedestrian crosswalk.

    Are there other opportunities for short turning to dilute the effects at Spadina/Dundas? What about Queen to McCaul loop? What about Dundas > Church > Queen > Victoria? (The latter is partly to provide an alternate turning point but also would serve a key transfer — I seem to recall something like this being considered at a commission meeting several years ago.)

    Steve: I don’t think that extended loops will do much to help, especially along the equally congested part of Queen to McCaul Loop. Service will return to Queens Quay Loop by December, and any new scheme would take much of the intervening time to implement. There will be new problems to deal with including the very unfriendly transit signal timing at Lake Shore Blvd.


  15. Could this simply be a political game.

    Start talking about banning cars, in order to push enforcement of the current parking and HOV lanes?

    Steve: It’s a political game, but it has more to do with Karen Stintz and her run for Mayor in 2014 than anything else.


  16. Thanks as usual for sharing these with us. I find the time-space diagram very interesting, and this is the type of thing that the TTC should be doing with every route, both as a review of line management and as a review of congestion and delay issues.

    Byford is partly right in that the TTC needs to start aggressively pursuing opportunities to speed up transit service and/or make it more reliable. But it doesn’t need to be on such a substantial scale, and arguably shouldn’t be. By involving such a major change, or a substantial extent (I am thinking back to Finch West last near yow), it makes implementation that much more of a challenge. Instead the TTC should focus on problem areas and ways to speed up service through there. They should be routinely exporting these types of diagrams, and following up with operators to identify potential sources. Then implement measures on a case by case basis.

    For example:
    – review stop locations (adjust location… or consolidate) and ways to speed up loading / unloading
    – adjust traffic regulations (parking and loading areas; turn restrictions)
    – review signal operations and potential to add transit priority extensions (or adjust them if they are of no benefit or actually hinder operations)
    – use signals to limit how much traffic can get into a problem area and displace congestion and queues of traffic to other places where they are not as problematic
    – implement reserved lanes… maybe longer sections, maybe just short strategic sections
    – new construction

    Start at the top of the list with things under TTC control (and this should include headway management, although it shouldn’t be a prerequisite, or else we will still be waiting a decade later…) Then move along to simple things that are easy, quick, inexpensive and reasonably uncontroversial, and only to more expensive or controversial solutions if the easier ones are ineffective. Be open to strategies that may be unconventional and don’t automatically default to things like “we need an extra lane”. Use a chisel instead of a sledgehammer (is that the analogy?).

    Here’s an example: in the morning, westbound 506 cars get stuck on Upper Gerrard at Woodbine behind cars trying to turn left, and traffic (not just streetcars) usually takes at least a couple of cycles to get through the light. So use the lights at Main and Gerrard to control how much traffic gets through, so that downstream is not overloaded. Move the queue of traffic east where it won’t impact streetcars to the same extent. It would at least be quick and inexpensive to implement, and easy to revert back if it didn’t have the desired effect.

    Using the service diagrams makes it easier to identify and then target specific areas, but this helps to counter the backlash that will occur from measures that might restrict parking or vehicle flow. It can be easily shown that the measures are limited to a certain area and designed to address a specific problem, rather than just making broad statements and solutions such as “transit is slow through downtown” / “let’s get rid of auto traffic on King”. And it makes it easier to spread the benefits around the system. There are other routes that suffer from congestion and delays.

    Targeting specific areas also expends the political capital in places where it is really worthwhile… and by doing one location at a time it would presumably be quicker to implement individual solutions (rather than getting bogged down on an entire route) .

    I am reminded of the Zurich example, where transit officials started aggressively looking for ways to speed up service on the surface routes after voters rejected a new subway network as being too costly. Andrew Nash has a couple of interesting articles on his web site.


  17. Steve, I like details shown in the charts you made.

    I don’t know if this is a crazy idea, but would it be possible that the TTC use gap cars like they do on the Yonge line? Ideally they should be waiting in a loop instead of blocking traffic. Though the TTC short turns many cars during rush hour too and having cars blocking traffic on Church all the time.

    Steve: The TTC already schedules gap cars (and buses), but the problem is that they must be near the location where a problem occurs to be effective. Also, as you note, there are limited places to store streetcars without getting in the way of traffic and regular short-turns.


  18. If routes operate with mixed fleets (both CLRV’s and LFLRV’s), and are scheduled to run on CLRV headways, wouldn’t bunching be inevitable since LFLRV’s can probably travel faster than CLRV’s? Would the TTC have to artificially slow the LFLRV’s down to counteract this (such as requiring LFLRV’s to wait extra time at each stop, etc.)?

    Steve: If this were the only reason to worry about bunching, we wouldn’t have too many problems. The TTC needs to rewrite its schedules to have more vehicles that operate rush hours only with others staying out all day, rather than an ad hoc mixture. This would allow LFLRVs to be assigned to the all-day runs with CLRVs on the peak only service.


  19. Steve wrote:

    “Asking for a total ban on cars rubs motorists (and their political supporters) the wrong way…”

    Kevin’s comment:

    What really rubbed me the wrong way was when my father was one of the 440 people that car drivers poison and kill every year with their lethal pollution.

    And I’ve got a 42 cm scar from the major cancer surgery when I was one of the 1,700 people in Toronto every year who are injured so seriously that they have to be hospitalized because they were poisoned by car drivers. Almost being killed by these violent, dangerous poisoning car drivers really rubbed me the wrong way.

    And having to pay the $2.2 billion in health care costs due to people being poisoned by car drivers also rubs me the wrong way.

    Children and the elderly are the most vulnerable to being the victims of car drivers. Every year in Toronto, children experience 1,200 acute bronchitis episodes and 68,000 asthma symptom days due to being poisoned by car drivers. But our FIDO- practicing police do not enforce the Child Endangerment part of the Criminal Code of Canada against these violent, dangerous, child poisoning criminals.

    For the horrific details, see [Toronto Public Health].

    The worst terrorist attack in Canadian history was the Air India bombing in 1985. And that only killed 329 people. Car drivers are so much worse than terrorists. They poison and kill more people than that every year in Toronto.

    That really rubs me the wrong way.


  20. “The TTC will install their tracks on Cherry Street even though the connection to King Street tracks will not occur until after the 2015 Games. The connection work will interrupt streetcar service on King Street, but this will be coordinated with changes at other points on the line to minimize the overall disruption..”

    Source: West Don Lands Construction Liaison Committee Meeting Minutes – May 28, 2013


  21. @KevinLove – nice one, but what has this to do with transit on King?
    Please be a poster-boy somewhere else.


  22. “I don’t want this to sound insulting to you personally, but there is a big problem with politicians who are totally unaware of the demand that downtown development is placing on the streetcar system, and of the limitations on road capacity caused by car-friendly policies.”

    Not sure why this would be a personal insult but at any rate the politician that backed this plan is Stintz and if this is a knock against her, well there it is. I think all of our politicians are aware of the strain of development but they are in the position of having to balance the multiple priorities of their constituencies. Given the recent developments (or lack there of) on the transit file I think that little experiments to grab the low hanging fruit are the way to go.

    Steve: I think you received the brunt of my feelings about comments in various locations co-mingling improved local transit with the DRL. Sorry about that.

    They’re not the same thing. Many pols have been so focused on getting more capacity for suburban commuters, they miss the fact that density they would hate out in North York or Scarborough is going up right downtown without adequate transit service. A subway line is at least a decade in the future and the stop layout will almost certainly not serve all of the development that will be in place. My concern is that we not see the King car as an alternative to regional transit needs, nor that we treat a future subway dream as an alternative to fixing the King car.

    I would agree with an experiment if only it addressed the times and locations where there really is serious congestion on King. Doing that, and addressing core area transportation generally, will require taking some road capacity away from cars to make room for transit and cycling. Activities like taxi stands and commercial deliveries will have to be located where they do not hog road capacity that has more important uses. If we are not prepared to tackle the hard problems, but only the low hanging fruit, we are doomed to years of activities like fixing subway bathrooms and outfitting operators with new uniforms, but no real improvement in transit service.


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